Friday, November 10, 2006

A Sea of Change

By Jared Trexler
The Phanatic

Piscataway, NJ – Exaltation may be life’s greatest feeling. It may be especially so on the heels of extreme disappointment and failure.

Watching two celebrations play out over the first week of November, I conjured a mental image of a musical chorus.

“It's a beautiful day, sky falls, you feel like...It's a beautiful day...Don't let it get away”
- U2

It’s a song of hope and promise. Idealism and intrigue. Passion and praise. It’s a sea of change.

Nancy Pelosi and Greg Schiano feel like they are on top of the world this Friday. Pelosi, a soon to be grandmother of six and Congresswoman from San Francisco’s yuppie 8th District; Schiano, a New Jersey native to Bucknell linebacker to student of Joe Pa to the highest paid employee in the state of New Jersey.

Bob Menendez should talk to Pelosi about a pay raise.

She’ll have more of a say in the matter Today than she did Yesterday. Schiano’s program is more like Tom Cruise in “Top Gun” Today than Rodney Dangerfield in any of his flicks Yesterday.

That’s the great thing about life. There is always tomorrow. Failure and fame are washed down with the same beer – only to wake up with the same splitting headache in the morning. (Fame may add a companion at your bedside)

Pelosi is still an anti-war, gay marriage activist, with a caring tone that either makes you want to hug her or ask for a glass of milk and some cookies. Schiano is still one hell of a football coach.

Yet, both are more powerful people today. They have more notoriety, more responsibility, and more pressure.

Because they are winners.

Losers are always left to pick up the pieces in a rambling explanation of what went wrong. They use words such as “thumping” and “out of sync,” while discussing failed execution and answering the inevitable question, “What’s next?”

It lies in the circular nature of our existence. Sorry science, but for every action there is an equal and identical reaction.

I want to be them.

The American people voted for change on Election Day. As much as they cast votes for Navy veteran Jim Webb and son of a politician Bob Casey, Jr., they cast a larger stone against our President and what they deem to be a failed policy in Iraq.

Pelosi, who was left to explain how a sitting Vice President in solid economic and peaceful times could lose in 2000 and again answer doubts about why a stick figure couldn’t defeat an unpopular Commander in Chief two years ago, finally took the stage in triumph Tuesday night.

While the walk was only a few steps from ground level, the view from the top had to seem like the highest mountain. The climb was painstakingly gradual, yet belief in principles paid off.

“It’s time for change,” she said at a celebration of impending victory Tuesday night.

Schiano couldn’t agree more.

Rutgers football had not played a meaningful football game since the first in our nation’s history – a 6-4 victory over Princeton on November 6, 1896.

While only a few hundred people congregated in New Brunswick for that game, the largest crowd to ever see the Scarlet Knights play in the state of New Jersey (44,111) witnessed a program-altering event last night.

Student tickets sold out days in advance. 2,000 temporary bleachers for the student body were placed in the one end zone. Fans received white rally towels, making the blimp view an unbelievable visual.

Yet, a setting doesn’t win you anything. Just because it’s the best story doesn’t make it the only one.

The Cardinals were, after all, the third-ranked team in the country, with an unstoppable offense and a top-notch coaching staff. Only a week earlier, they invaded Morgantown and moved the ball at will against West Virginia.

Yet, an undersized – short on bulk and on pedigree – defense frustrated quarterback Brian Brohm to the point where he was caught on camera shouting at his brother and quarterback’s coach.

Little Trex and I know how that goes.

The Cardinals’ high-powered attack was held to five straight three-and-outs. They didn’t score in the second half, and to be honest, they never really came close.

The active Rutgers defense gave Ray Rice – how tough is this kid? – Mike Teel – this guy just wins – and a lanky, super-sized freshman wideout Kenny Britt – the type of recruit the Scarlet Knights never used to land – plenty of opportunities to put points on the board.

The group responded with just enough. When Jeremy Ito split the uprights from 28 yards away with 13 seconds left, no barrier could stop the sea of red that was about to pour on to the field.

Or should I say, the sea of change.

“This is the way college football is supposed to be,” Schiano said. “The metropolitan area maybe hasn’t had this before, but I have a feeling they are really going to take to it.”

The country has changed greatly from just two years ago. In 2004, Rutgers was 4-7 and only mustered one victory in the Big East. George W. Bush was working with a mandate.

But time changes the course of history. It was never more evident than this past week.

There is just one problem.

Hillary Clinton may not get used to the bright red color at the top the Empire State Building.

**Photo courtsey of Tom Ciszek**

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Copyright 2006
The Phanatic


Anonymous said...

Yo dude, pay up! This guy laid 21 points on the Louisville-Rutgers game. He now owes me $$$. Stop writing this slop and apy up. Go RU!

Anonymous said...

Yawn.... No one cares about New Jersey or Rutgers. NJ is the armpit of the US.

Anonymous said...

Man oh man, you lost me after all your pointless political dribble. Learn how to write so that you can keep your reader interested.

Anonymous said...

Maybe if you understood the political ramble you would have a clue.